IAIA Help - Students

Internet Connection Requirements

Updated Feb 12, 2021

To use Zoom effectively, you need a minimum speed Internet connection. This article shows the Internet connection speeds recommended by Zoom for specific capabilities. It also contains links to a website that can show you your current connection speed.

Connection Speed Requirements

Bandwidth requirements
Bandwidth describes the maximum volume of data your Internet connection can maintain. Bandwidth is often compared to a physical pipe through which water (data) runs. To increase the rate of flow, you need a larger diameter pipe (that is, more bandwidth).

Attending Zoom Class Sessions

Participating in Zoom class sessions takes a certain amount of bandwidth. We recommend:

  • 150 Kbps (megabits-per-second) is recommended as the minimum bandwidth for IAIA students.
  • 1.5 Mbps would be better, and ensure reliable connections with your Zoom class sessions.
  • 1 Mbps is adequate for one-on-one Zoom sessions.

Run the speed test linked below. If your connection speed is below or close to 500 Kbps, please contact the IAIA IT Department for assistance. Send an email message to: itsupport@iaiai.edu

Speed Test

Use the link below to run a speed test on your Internet connection. This speed can vary by your carrier, time of day, and others in your household who are using the Internet at the same time.

Not familiar with the terminology used to measure your connection speed? Click the heading below for more plain-English details.

More About Connection Speed & Bandwidth (click here to view)

Below are additional explanations for terms and concepts you might not be familiar with.

Measuring Connection Speeds

Internet connection speeds are typically measured in bits per second. Higher numbers are better. There are two typical units of measurement you'll see:

  • Kbps - kilobits per second   Example: 10Kbps = 10,000 bits per second
  • Mbps - megabits per second  Example: 10 Mbps = 10,000,000 bits per second

Real world examples: Playing back a music file requires about 250 Kbps, streaming an HD movie requires about 1 Mbps.

Running a Speed Test

A speed test can give you an idea of your real-world connection speed. The results of this test can vary with the time of day, others at your home also working online, and other factors.

Video Demonstration of a Speed Test (< 2 minutes)

Additional Speed Test Links - SpeedOf.Me | BandwidthPlace.com

Download Speed

Download speed is how fast you can transfer or stream files or video from the Internet to your computer. The higher your download speed, the more smoothly and reliably you can view video and participate in online class sessions.

Upload Speed

Upload speed is how fast you can transfer files from your computer to your online course or other locations. If your upload speed is very slow, some file transfers might not go through. (But you can try again.)

Note: Most connection upload speeds are much slower than their download speeds.

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